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Crochet for days!

Crochet for days!

HOOORAY! This is CROCHET FOR DAYS! Because we did this Mood Scarf for 31 days! KitKat and I finished our Mood Scarf, ok ok – we are 85% done. We have to crochet the border on it, she needs to sew in ends, and then wash and block! How exciting! It only took us close to three months since that is the amount of time she is with us in those three months! As we were finishing up the scarf yesterday, for our last day, she was already asking to do ANOTHER project! What the heck?! ALREADY?! Let’s finish this one first — Looks over to the five projects I have in the works at this very moment. Oh dear, she watches me too well doesn’t she?

 

Anyway, cool things I liked about doing the Mood Scarf.

  1. I got to do a project with KitKat (step-daughter of awesomeness).
  2. It encouraged both of us to really dig into what mood we were feeling that day – in its own way it was a mindfulness journey.
  3. We both ended on the same color/mood we started our scarves on.

I would tell anyone, ANYONE, who is into crochet or knitting to do a mood scarf of their very own if they are looking for a project. I really enjoyed it. It is a quick (I mean a month-long project but it really doesn’t take very long to do each day), the results are fun and fabulous, and you really have to be honest with yourself.

What do I plan on doing with the left over yarn from the Mood Scarf project? I plan on finishing my other projects first, is what I would say if my hubby asked me that question. But since I asked for you cause you’re curious, I’m gonna make a ripple picnic blanket with it and some other yarn from my stash! HAH! Just don’t tell the husband.

The Days are all crocheted on and are as long as the kitchen island!
Just me goofily wearing my scarf. It is very big!
KitKat showing how tall hers is on the second to last day we had left to crochet.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here was our layout for your viewing pleasure and maybe project inspiration.

Keek’s and KitKat’s Mindfulness Mood Scarf

Our Moods and colours

  • Adventurous/Excited – Purple
  • Happy – Orange
  • Calm/Relaxed/Peaceful/Content – Sky Blue
  • Average/Neutral/Med – Green
  • Bored – Brown
  • Sad/Hopeless – Dark Blue
  • Unsettled/Mixed emotion – Yellow
  • Stressed/Overwhelmed/Frustrated – Black
  • Fear/Uncertainty – Grey
  • Angry/Upset/Irritated – Red

Our Method:

  • Materials
    • Crochet hook – 5.5mm (I/9)US
    • Yarn – 1 Skien of each color should be fine (we used Red Heart Super Saver, wash it with fabric softener and it softens up nicely)
    • Moods/Feelings/Emotions
  • Pattern
    • Moss stitch
      • chain 26 +1
      • Row 1 – skin 1ch from end, *sl st into next ch, hdc, rep from * turn
      • Row 2 – ch1, *sl st, hdc, rep from * to end
      • Repeat row 2 throughout scarf

I had a lot of the yarn already in my stash from other projects, but KitKat and I purchased four more skeins at the beginning because we wanted a lot more emotion options added. I have seen other plans that only have found colours, but we felt that there needed to be a broader range of choices. Having done that, I am glad we did. The reason I have more than one emotion for each colour is because sometimes those emotions all seem to go hand in hand for me.

I hope this helps and inspires you, because that’s why I do these things.

Til next time,

Keeks

Mood Scarf

Mood Scarf

This past week I told Katie about the project I found for us to do together. I figured it out a few weeks ago, but I was finally able to share with her this past week while she (and Matthew) were with us for Christmas. The reason I thought about this project was because of my excitement to do my Temperature Blanket. I have been wanting to find a simple and productive project for Katie and I for a while and I finally landed on it. 

On December 27th Katie and I went yarn shopping to JoAnn’s for only four colors that we need. The rest of the colours I had in my stash. I spent a lot of time thinking about the emotions to place on our chart plus the colours to coordinate. Katie helped me as well and she picked out the colours we went and shopped for. JoAnn’s was having a good deal on the yarn, something I was happy for because I also wanted to show Katie that we didn’t have to spend a lot of money to enjoy our project.

Katie is doing well with her crochet and didn’t want to do single stitch. I thought the Moss stitch with this pattern would do well for her. At first she thought it would be easy, but somehow she started with 27 stitches and then now has 18. I told her I guess it isn’t as easy as she thinks.

I have titled it our Mindfulness Mood Scarf. Katie even mentioned that she has enjoyed this scarf so far because it has already been making her really think about how she is feeling throughout the day.

Katie and I have chosen the same emotions, but on different days. Our scarves have all the same colours in it but in different patterns. She added green to hers yesterday and topped it off with an Adventurous/Excited today because she enjoyed playing with her brother and riding on her bike.

For those of you wanting to do a Mood Scarf yourself, let me show our plan. Realize, we chose a lot of colours and emotions and you can change things as you see fit for you. I have seen plans with 5 to 6 colours. I am hoping to do another one of these, once Katie and I have completed ours, with a friend. I am thinking about the next way to do my colours and emotion pairing.

I have enjoyed doing this with her so much already. Having the half hour or so each evening to sit at the kitchen table, crochet, chat, and just be with each other has been very enjoyable so far.

I’m excited to see how it grows.

 

Til next time,

Keeks

Rattlesnake Ledge

Rattlesnake Ledge

 

That was where we started. That peak up there on the right is where we are heading to, the taller of the two peaks that is. Known as Rattlesnake Ledge. Apparently it is a popular hiking trail to Washingtonians but I didn’t know that till I researched it. IMG_7100

 

Tuesday night I told Mark we were going to do this. You should have seen his body language! He was not looking forward to it, apparently he didn’t have good experiences with the last hiking partners from what I gathered. I packed lunches for us (just simple sandwiches of course) and the next morning we headed out! Of course Jazzy came along 🙂

 

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We hit a few spots that were quite icy and slippery but they didn’t last too long.

 

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After much trekking we finally made it to the top. At one point I was disliking my idea of this hike but I was still thoroughly enjoying it.

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I was one happy girl to be up there! I picked a gorgeous day to do this hike for sure! So clear and crisp.

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Here’s the family up top in our panoramic picture! IMG_7031

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Our girl child brought her erasers of course! I encouraged her to though. IMG_7062 IMG_7152

 

 

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Today was amazing! Jasper was EXHAUSTED at the end of it all and so were three of the four of us! I still had tons of energy and was ready to keep on trucking doing things. But that was ok. We had a lovely hike and I would recommend that to anyone who wants to hike up a small hill 😉

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Cheers!

Saving Your Fresh Herbs

Saving Your Fresh Herbs

This year I planted a herb garden 🙂 Because of this I have A LOT of herbs (Basil, peppermint, thyme, parsley, cilantro, sage, and oregano) that I will not be able to use ALL RIGHT NOW! So I decided to do this fun way of preserving them.

Preserving Herbs for Cooking by Freezing 🙂

What you need! 

Fresh herbs
Olive oil(or oil of choosing)
Some helpers – preferably with smiles.
About 30 minutes of time (or thyme) whichever you prefer 😛

First, pick your herbs!

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Here is our first pickings

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Next we wash them!

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Chop them into LITTLE BITS! I liked to use my little CPR chopper 🙂

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Fourthly, place them into an ice tray like these ones. I made sure they were 3/4 of the way full. I also REALLY like using our star-shaped tray 🙂

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Add your oil!!Olive oil pictured here

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FREEZE!!!

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Use for your meals!! YAY!

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And one minor suggestion, don’t forget which ones are which! I accidentally forgot which were my sage and parsley. Because of this I wrote a little map down in my journal.

Anyway, enjoy! I will have to do this again this weekend with cilantro!

I did not show my peppermint!! I will do a post later about those ones 🙂

 

Plants, plants, and more plants…..

Plants, plants, and more plants…..

Oh dear!

Yesterday was such a full, busy, tiring day! We had lovely breakfast burritos for breakfast then went to Flower World in Snohomish. I wanted to go there because they had the best selection of succulents the last time we were there. I did not like the ones from Home Depot or QFC when we were there the last time.

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I picked up some little glass orbs from World Market for the previous succulents I had acquired.  At Flower World the kids thought it would be fun to have their own plants 🙂 So, Mark and I decided that this would be an amazing idea for plants whom like lots of neglect 🙂

Here is Katie’s plants she chose, planted, and I believe named but I am not quite sure on that. I know she was upstairs for quite some time counting both plant’s leaves! IMG_3052

Here is Matthews choice 🙂 He didn’t really help, his sister did most of the planting and organizing for him. Hahahah oh well, it is on his window sill and will most likely fall off. Hahahaha. … especially with him being a boy and us having cats.

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Mark liked this indoor plant, it was only 99cents so I decided to get it and see if I can keep it alive.

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Here is Mark’s succulent’s. He apparently had one like the one in the middle here for 15 years. He was said he was sad to lose it because it had grown so large in the time he had it!! We have started him a whole new one to replace that lost one. IMG_3055

Oh and this one was for me… a Creeping Myrtle 🙂 Love it….We will hang it later.

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Blog is finally up and running!

Blog is finally up and running!

Ok, so there may be some glitching and mess-ups, but Mark and I will discover and work on those. However, he finally set up my blog to be on its own little account. Now I have to start working with the innards and other things. But frankly I was just wanting to post pictures!!!!! BWAH! And now that it is up and running and I have played with it a little bit I have nothing I want to write about.

*interjection* Mark thinks I am a mad typer, I think he is silly.

Anyway, no stories. Must go do stuff and things then maybe I will write a blog with lots of stories and pictures. I do have a lot to write about. We have a garden, I am saving the herbs, making bowls, doing crafts with kids, finding supplies for all my home DIY stuff, and have been having lots of success just trying my best to live life. 🙂 Though tonight I have decided I am going to do nothing but watch the TV, eat pizza, drink beer, and just relax (this whole idea turned into blogging, helping Mark get blinds sorted out for the house, probably taking a walk, did set up the cat litter boxes around the house, and have to cook dinner. Yup, that’s being lazy right?

*facepalm*

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Mornings, kids, plants, glories, gardening, dogs…. Oh the busy-ness of life!

Mornings, kids, plants, glories, gardening, dogs…. Oh the busy-ness of life!

Oh goodness! Where to even start! We MOVED! YAY! Last week we moved to our new house and it is a lovely house! We moved to be closer to Mark’s kids and also to have a very house of our own. The children LOVE the house!! So exciting! They had a lot of fun moving and packing while we were doing so the week they were with us. I had a lot of fun teaching them things and hanging out with them as well 🙂

Morning Glories: I planted some Morning Glories to put along our rock wall (see it in the window in the below picture) in the back garden. Well, I only planted them on June 26th and look what we have today!!

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WOAH! They really sprung up there! I am going to replant them with some sticks to start vining up tomorrow or the next couple days. The kids watched me plant them and helped; they are going to be so excited to see them all grown!

Katie’s Birthday: Katie had a wonderful birthday before her birthday!! Her dad got her a new bike for the new house!! She loved it! We also had Nana and Poppy over for dinner on Sunday night where we treated them to our traditional Sunday dinner of sausage roll (vegetarian of course!) and veggies. Do not forget Katie’s favourite part though, the SWEET CHILI SAUCE! That girl loved it. My parent’s I think liked it too! Nana gave Katie some lovely outfits for her to wear here, and boy did she look all grown up! I can’t believe how much she has developed into a lovely girl in just this last year! She is just simply gorgeous already. She must have got her dad’s looks!  🙂

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This was from our walk the evening we were fully moved in 🙂

My Man and Our Dog:  (just pictures of my lovely man of a Man and our dog)

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Tortillas: What do you do when you don’t have tortillas at home and you don’t want to take the quick trip to the store to buy some? MAKE THEM!!! (yea yea, I know it took me 1.25 hours, but it was TOTALLY worth it!

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Tonight’s dinner was COMPLETELY homemade enchiladas 🙂 Sauce and all! We used lentils for protein, insides were made up of eggplant, mushrooms and yellow pepper, all the while being placed in those delicious homemade tortillas 🙂 It was worth the effort for sure! I absolutely love my gas stove top and oven! I had all four burners going at once! Mark was most impressed.

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(this is my ugly shirt, I like my ugly shirt)
Castor Oil and Clove Oil:
I have chosen a new oil to try out and that is Clove oil. I add a new one from time to time to try them out. Clove is good for scars and skin care in general. I have also added castor oil into my regimen! I placed some mixed with clove oil on my face this evening and will be sleeping with it on. Honestly, castor oil doesn’t feel like I have oil on my face as olive oil and even my best friend, coconut oil, does. Also, I love the clove smell 🙂 Now that I have added clove to my collection, I am able to make up a great headache mix for Matthew to use while he is here. It will go along perfectly with his sleeping “potion” I made him and Katie.

Some pictures 🙂 

 

Mark and I enjoyed some lovely, homemade strawberry daiquiri on our first REALLY hot day! 
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Here is some pictures of the kids! Katie getting her bike, them laughing and giggling maniacally. They laugh so much when they are with us, I know it feels me with joy to hear their laughter.
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Matther and Mark worked hard at getting our outdoor seating assembled the first night 🙂
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Kids playing in the yard with the dog 🙂
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Here was the view tonight! No filter! Just an iPhone 🙂 Lovely sky!!!
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Finally, I wanted to show you my two other things I am growing… the first one is Sage and Rosemary. apparently they are really challenging to grow and take a long time to germinate, so there is nothing to see but dirt. The second picture is my chamomile and lavender! All the chamomile have sprung up and one of the lavender 🙂 Just waiting!
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Enjoy my overly long post!

Dying plants- the experiment.

Dying plants- the experiment.

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While we were replanting our potter plants, Katie and I happened upon these little stragglers. I quickly decided to replant them into some jars and see what happens. This evening we all claimed which one we thought would succeed and named it!! Now the journey goes to see which little straggler survives and which ones fail.

No, the named plant pets will not be taken care of by their respective claimers. I will in fact be tending to each and every one of them with not ill will in place. Mwahahahahahah ahahahahahahh.

Being a “Step”

Being a “Step”

I have to say one of the biggest struggles I have had in my recent years has been being a “step parent”. I do not want to be the kid’s mother, I do not want to take their mother’s place… honestly, I am not even sure I want to ever give birth to a child and ever be a “mother”.  But having these lovely kids in and out of my life has proven to be very emotionally challenging.  I love them entirely, just as I love the kids I have encountered in Africa. Their dad is an amazing man. He is generous, loving, soft, selfless, and incredibly gentle. I do not think they see it just yet because he is their father. The amount of bullcrap he puts up with just so he can continue to have his every other weekend and a few other odd weeks here and there with them is ridiculous. He is an incredibly loving father who wants the best for his children. I have never wanted to have kids until I saw what a great dad this man is to the kids he gets to see part-time. This man makes me want to have kids so him and I can have a family together.  I want to give him a family he can connect with fully. However, once I think of all the physiological changes my body would have to go through to have said children I would much rather just have a dog and part-time kids instead.  Call me selfish.

It has become quite evident that the kids are not allowed to mention me to the other set of parents, the kids have told us as much.. Yes, their mother is remarried and is even pregnant with their new little one (the kids have said it is a girl so congratulations to them) but it still seems to bother her that Mark is remarried to another lady.  It is also evident that the other set of parents have made fun of the way I (or Mark) do things. Logically, this should not bother me; however, there are some times that I just want to scream because of the things the children mention to us that the other set of parents say or do about their father or I. It just becomes so frustrating and menial. I mean, we get angry emails about the children not having their clothes folded properly. First off, we have the kids do their own laundry, fold their own clothes, and pack their own bags when they go back to the other set of parents house. We want to teach the kids to think for themselves and be self-sufficient. If the clothes are not folded to standard of the step father then he needs to teach them how he wants it done, that is not our job. We teach the kids to take care of their things.

I want them to have morals of honesty, integrity, and self-respect. I want to start taking them to Sunday School because I realised how important that was in my early childhood. Dad didn’t start taking me until I was 8 years of age so I know it is not too late to start taking them. Maybe I will take them to at least have something to consider a solid rock while their life is going to be consistent change and messy.

Life, kids, and the future husband of my world :)

Life, kids, and the future husband of my world :)

Recently I have been around children a lot, working a lot, and just all over living life a lot. You see, Mark and I are getting a house, we have his kids every other weekend (plus other BONUS weekends that I LOVE with them), we do things with just us the other weekends, and I am now working day shift (Which is AWESOME). I love being home with him and the kids while they are here in the evenings.

We have great fun 🙂 One weekend we went to Snoqualmie Falls one weekend and it was full of smiles and learning 🙂

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See, there is my handsome man with his kids 🙂 I can usually get some great smiles from them for cameras. I have seen some sour faces from them in previous pictures!! Don’t like those!

Another weekend we went to Volunteer Park and walked around a lot of different places. We saw people LARPing in the park, went through the greenhouse, watched My Neighbor Totoro that evening. The kids took the soot sprites around all over the place and took lots of happy pictures 🙂

We sat on camels, walked up water towers, danced, had a Ministry of Silly Walks, and saw fun things and ate amazing chocolate!!

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Those are two faces of two of the guys I love in my life 🙂

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Then this past weekend we had some great fun with  the kids doing things in Seattle.

They smile so brightly 🙂 And Mark and I take #usies

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Long story short, but I am quite enjoying my time outside of work with my family. And I can’t wait for more time spent with them full of smiles and happiness. Also the kids have been quite enjoying the vegetarian lifestyle we tend to have 🙂 Must post recipes later.